Work just keeps on coming at me lately. Early in the am to late in the pm, weekends, even Sundays… it’s tough sometimes, but if it was easy, anyone could do it.
Yesterday was a good, but exceptionally busy Monday. The text messages started at 5:40 in the morning and were still going at 5:30 – about 45 minutes after I rolled my bike out the front door to ride. I got home quite early but Mrs. Bgddy had gotten a flat earlier and my buddy, Mike had a rough time changing the tire on the road so my daughter (home because the school was locked down for two weeks because of a high COVID case count) had to pick her up. I gave her the pointers again, on how to change the tire herself (we’ve been over it several times, don’t start on me) while she did all of the work… I figured I’d be done in ten minutes, it took 30 before I could get dressed and roll my bike out the door. Chuck, for once, was waiting at my driveway.
I was a ball of stress as I threw my leg over the top tube.
Chuck, God Bless him, took us out at about 16-mph. I took over for miles two & three and notched the pace up a little bit, but not by much. We were fairly bundled up as we were about 15 degrees below normal (47 F or 8 C). I was in shorts, leg warmers, arm warmers and a thermal long-sleeved jersey and I was perfect. We did our normal loop at an outrageously relaxed pace, talking about the topics of the day… and I have to be careful not to get me going on that note. I’ll just suffice it to say we had some spectacular laughs.
And so it was. I pulled into the driveway with a perfectly slow Jimmer Loop; 19.75 miles and we didn’t even crack 16-mph for an average. Chuck rolled on for a few laps around the block while I cleaned up and prepared dinner for my wife and I.
So there I was, making dinner, smiling at how much fun I had out on my ride. There was no training value to it – I won’t be faster in any way for having gone on that ride. I thought about how awesomely comfortable my Trek is now that she’s all done – it truly is, finally, an amazing bike and a joy to ride. Most important, my stress level went from about a six or seven down to a one over the course of just under 20 miles and one hour, fourteen minutes.
I was able to relax at dinner and have a decent conversation with my wife where, without that release of steam, I’d have been a terrible dinner partner. Just like I can’t do without meetings for recovery, my bikes make everyday stress manageable…
And for that, I am grateful.